A DEFENCE technology company in Dorset has signed a deal described as a landmark for the industry in Australia.

Poole-based Aish Technologies sealed a memorandum of understanding with the design and manufacturing company APC Technology.

The memorandum, signed at the 2019 Pacific International Maritime Exposition, commits the companies to working in partnership on the manufacture of “rugged computing” for Australia. The term refers to technology designed to operate in harsh environments.

Aish is a specialist in systems designed to perform under harsh military conditions. Its key products include enclosures and cabinets for submarines and ships and a protection system called ICCP.

The system is designed to minimise damage to vessels below the waterline from galvanic corrosion, which is caused by current flow between the different metals used in ships’ construction.

Through its partnership with Aish, APC Technology will diversify to offer a range of rugged equipment and systems to meet the demands of next generation defence projects in Australia.

Scott Begbie, managing director of APC Technology, said the sharing of expertise with Aish would boost the Australian company’s growth and transformation.

Matt Osler, business development manager at Aish, was in Australia for the signing.

He said: “Our purpose-built facility in the UK has the facilities and technological infrastructure to carry out advanced manufacturing techniques. Partnering with a like-minded organisation such as APC Technology to achieve similar capabilities presents exciting opportunities for us in the Australian defence industry.”

The Australian defence industry is expected to grow by an average of 5.6 per cent a year over the five-year period starting in 2018-2019, to 37.6billion dollars.

Aish’s managing director Ric Elkington said: “This represents a wonderful opportunity for both companies and we look forward to supporting our new partners with our technological expertise. It comes at an exciting time for Aish, as we develop our capability in rugged solutions for the naval and military markets.

“Aish is looking to engage in similar partnerships in other key regions of the world, reflecting the global nature of the defence industry and Aish’s ambitious plans for further growth in the future.”

Aish, part of the international AGI Holdings Group, employs around 150 people in Poole.